Cats, Embroidery, etsy shop

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas

Handmade StockingsStockings for myself and my furry friends.

‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, two creatures were stirring as they’d heard a mouse. The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, each hand-made…and covered in cat hair.

Handmade Stockings with CatFerdinand loves his stocking and his new goldfish toy.

This post welcomes the newest addition to Pink Toe Press‘ holiday line-up: Custom Pet Stockings. These stockings are hand-made with love and care using felt and embroidery threads. The stockings you see in this posting were made for my two cats. Customers are able to personalize the colors of the stocking from available felt colors to match the color fur of their pets. Hand-embroidered and embellished with vintage buttons and ric-rac, these stockings are a must-have for any pet lover!

Handmade StockingsThe two design options: Realistic fur colors; Festive bright colors.

Currently, there are two color options available: Realistic Fur Colors and Festive Bright Colors. Each will have a plain backing with most embellishments saved for the front of the stocking. Designs are reversible and can be hung either way.

Merry Christmas!

Artwork, Cats, etsy shop, Graphic Design, Greeting Cards

NEW Birthday Cards Added to my Etsy Shop

As I was looking for a birthday card for a friend’s youngster the other day, I found myself at a crossroad between “girly” and “just-for-boys”. It would seem that most children’s birthday cards are highly gendered and pretty sarcastic. I wanted a nice card for a nice little girl who isn’t into princesses or shopping yet. There were none to be found.

I took it upon myself to make a set of three birthday cards for boys or girls (and unisex!) that are cute but not overly-cute; boyish but not brutish. I mentioned them in an earlier post…

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It’s no secret that I like cats. I designed these cards to have a retro feel with the bold, iconic illustrations of boy cats and girl cats. I gave each card a hand-lettered message that says “Birthday Girl or Boy” and “Happy Birthday” for a gender neutral option. I am very pleased with how they turned out.

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Wish “Happy Birthday” to a boy or a girl (or adult!)

*Also available in lime green and other colors!

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Blues and greens for the Birthday Boy

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Pink or red for the Birthday Girl

I styled the design after 1950’s-style cartoon characters with the simple eyes, bold lines, and bright colors. Each cat is holding a cupcake in one hand and a present in the other. The hand-lettering gives the card an informal feel that lends itself well to children’s cards. They are, however, not overtly childish, so you could send one to an adult too!

They are available in my Etsy Shop and every card is printed by me and hand scored. Each comes with its own envelope. Other custom-colors can be created upon request.

Artwork, Cats, Screen Printing, Travel

Spilling the Beans: Inspiration Post Rocket Dog and Cat

I’ve had a lot of people ask me where I get my inspiration from. That is a hard question to answer for many artists and, many times, one illustration can be inspired by many different sources. I know some people who make work about their own experiences, others who are inspired by the programs and movies they watch, the foods they eat, and the list goes on and on. Many of my pieces are inspired by my love of animals and nature, history, food, and, well, my list goes on and on too! Today I thought I’d share my inspiration for my Retro Rocket Dog and Cat Prints.

Rocket Dog Tote Bag

Cat Rocket Postcard

When I was in college, my senior thesis project was inspired by vintage postage stamps and match boxes. I did a lot of research and made a series of prints featuring extremeophiles (animals and insects that can live in extremely hostile environments). My favorite extremeophile, the Waterbear, is able to survive in space! They are able to go in to a state of extreme hibernation and are able to be revived back to life by a drop of water. No kidding!

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The famous Waterbear!

In researching other space-traveling animals, I found inspiration in Laika the Soviet Space Dog. She was the first animal to orbit the earth on November 3, 1957. She sadly died due to overheating of the spacecraft, but her story lives on in stamps, sculptures, books and more!

laika-stamp

I love the idea of making a print inspired by a real animal who helped advance our knowledge of space travel and its effects on living things. I also love the design of old space crafts, so that was a no-brainer for me to design a print inspired by those. I’ve been hand-drawing retro-rockets on bags at my other job for over 3 years, making a screen print is the logical next-step!

Candy shop bag

Candy Bags make everyone smile, young and old! Every purchase comes in a hand-drawn rocket bag!

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Retro-future rocket stamps!

Sputnik 2 was eye-catching, but I wanted something more flashy, so I gave my “Puppy Stardust” a different rocket inspired by retro-future illustrations of the late 50’s and 60’s. There were many designs I liked that were memorialized in stamps and postage, but my favorite rockets are the old Tin Toys that I’ve always coveted. Hoping that kids would like my design, I drew inspiration from those toys: their simple shapes and bright colors.

Retro Rocket Space Ships

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An assortment of retro Tin Toys.

And now you know where I got the hair-brained idea to make a Rocket Dog and Rocket Cat. I don’t know of any cats who orbited space, but as a Cat Mom of two silly cats, I thought it would be unfair to leave them out. The “Rocket Cat” design is inspired by my cat Ferdinand who, I think would make a fine AstroCat.

Artwork, Cats, Drawings, Graphic Design

Retro Rocket Postcards

Retro Rocket Postcards

I am excited to share my newest project with you: Retro Rocket Postcards! These fun postcards feature a Dashing Dog and Curious Cat as astronauts in their own Space Ships!

Retro Rockets

These postcards all measure 4 x 6 inches and they are printed on AMAZING Cougar Paper which gives the postcards both an amazing weight and color.

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They even have a space on the back for writing the recipient’s address and a handy icon so you know where your postage goes; it’s 33 cents for a card within the USA, $1.10 for anywhere else. These postcards are perfect for sending little letters to people all around the world!

NOW available as a 6-pack in my Etsy shop!

Cats, Drawings, New Artwork, Screen Printing, Travel

Sneak Peek of New Projects

Howdy! It’s been a while since we last chatted. I’ve been quite busy with work and also had family visiting, so I apologize for the delay.

A sneak peek of a new project! Stay tuned for more info!
A sneak peek of a new project! Stay tuned for more info!

I’ve been working on a few fun new projects recently and I’d love to share a sneak peek of one of the newest projects I am working on! This is a new drawing that I will be printing very soon! Stay tuned for more process photos and other sneak peeks of other projects in the same “series”!

Artwork, Cats, Drawings, Halloween, Screen Printing

Halloween Time is the Best Time

I love Halloween, if you couldn’t tell from the last few posts….

What a spooky Kitty!

I’m getting in to the Halloween Spirit with some of my newest artwork. This new Pink Toe Press Exclusive screen print is just in time for Halloween!

The print is based off of a pen and ink drawing that I drew recently. It is printed with Speedball Acrylic Inks on a heavy, smooth Bristol. Measuring 11 by 17 inches, it fits perfectly in any room! Next time I am going to try the print on orange paper and on T-Shirts. Stay tuned!

Artwork, Cats, Drawings, Greeting Cards

Cat Calavera

Calaveras, or Sugar Skulls, are a mainstay of the holiday Dia De Los Muertos. Molded from sugar, traditional Calaveras represent the sweetness of life and the sadness of death. I’ve always loved and been fascinated by this holiday ever since I was young. My Spanish teacher in primary school was raised in Mexico, and she introduced us to the holiday and its traditions.

Living in Southern California, I really enjoy visiting Olvera Street during the Dia De Los Muertos celebration. It’s something I look forward to every year. Death is a sad part of life, but I think that celebrating someone’s life is a good way to start when mourning someone’s death. This Calavera is of a cat’s skull. I was inspired to make this drawing because a friend’s cat passed away a couple weeks ago. Drawn using markers and pens, this drawing is nice and colorful. I think this would make a lovely card or tattoo design. Or both! Who knows, maybe I’ll Celebrate Dia De Los Muertos in style by getting this awesome tattoo.

Artwork, Cats, Drawings

Ground Control to Major Tom

“Can you hear me, Major Tom?” …Major Tom-Cat, that is.

I hope all is well. I’ve been a little spacey lately what with all the pain meds they had me on after my accident.  It’s been almost a week since I was doored in a cycling accident sending me to the hospital with a whole lot of injuries. I had to take a few days off work to let my body and mind reboot. I’m still in a lot of pain, but at least I’m alive, right? Nothing like a near-death experience to make you reflect on life and what you’re doing with it. With my few days off (I was in far too much pain to even think about going to work) I was able to relax a bit and take some time to meditate…and nap.

Honestly, sometimes I feel like I work all the time…between my two part-time jobs, managing the shop and the other at the studio, my freelance work, and my personal projects, I don’t really find myself having much (if any) free time. Granted, I do enjoy what I work on… but the hours I work can be a little rough. However as an artist, I get so pleased when I see a project that I like through to completion. That being said, I think I should be better at taking time to relax and enjoy myself. You only live once, and who knows what is going to happen next.

Although I most certainly wish it came in a different package, I think that I really needed a break for more than just a physical healing time, you know?

-P.

Artwork, Cats, Embroidery, Fiber Arts, New Artwork

Good Luck Charms

I would like to introduce to you my newest addition to my Etsy shop and the Handmade Galleries, Pink Toe Press’ LUCKY FEET! These Lucky Feet are a lovely little good-luck charm that you can carry with you wherever you go. They are a lovely new alternative to the traditional “good luck” charms.

Throughout my formative years,  I always wanted to have my very own “Lucky Rabbit’s Foot,” but I was never lucky privileged enough to get one. My parents were pretty smart about which fads they endorsed and which they discouraged, and a “Lucky Rabbit’s Foot” was never mine.

That being said, my father is a hunter and a practical man,  he did offer to bring me home the foot of a rabbit from one of his hunting trips, but I never did take him up on that For years I envied all the other kids who had the brightly-colored lucky animal’s foot dangling from their backpacks or trapper-keepers…but I digress.

A lucky “Rabbit’s Foot” on my vegan purse.

NOW as a vegetarian and maker, I have found a lovely solution to my childhood dream of having the foot of a poor, dead critter on my bag. These Lucky Feet are handmade with love and care, crafted from Eco-Felt, ribbon and string, and can be clipped just about anywhere. You can use them as a zipper pull, key chain, or an accent on a bag.  An added bonus is that they are cruelty free, animal friendly, and vegan friendly.   I currently have a variety of color options available for these feet, and they come in “Rabbit” or “Cat.”